A bus carrying 40 inmates overheated on Interstate 95 Friday after it was caught up in the traffic from an earlier fatal crash.
The bus pulled off to the side of the road, and the inmates were stuck on the hot bus with no air conditioning for about two hours.
The prisoners were juvenile offenders between the ages of 18 and 25 and were considered high-security risks, so the guards could not remove them from the bus until backup law enforcement officers arrived.
Two corrections officers were on the bus, and they did get off it while waiting for other officers to arrive.
The prisoners, who were all handcuffed, were yelling that they were hot and needed to get off the bus.
Several collapsed from the heat, and once backup arrived, the prisoners were removed from the bus and laid out in the grass along the side of the highway. Several had passed out from the heat.
Many gasped for air, vomited or lay unconscious along the side of the busy highway. One prisoner stopped breathing and was feared dead until paramedics revived him. A few medics tried to treat the prisoners while the guards stood by with their rifles ready.
"We've been in there for about two hours with no air or water. (It was) bad," one of the prisoners told WESH 2 News reporter Dan Billow.
We saw one of these battleship grey prisoner transports on our way back from the Jacksonville hempfest. A nightmare on wheels. They really look like something from a horror movie.
The one we drove beside was a modified schoolbus with iron welded over the windows.